Kyle Adams/Staff Photographer
There are times when the prospect of eating three meals in the cafeteria can be less than thrilling. Even two meals a day can leave students dragging their feet on the way to the dining hall.
Junior Allyson Rudd, a resident on campus, is always looking to innovate in the cafeteria.
“After the same options over and over,” she said, “I try to make new things to spice it up a little bit.”
All students could use a fresh take on cafeteria options and bring their restaurant favorites to the caf. One such option is to create a Chipotle-inspired burrito bowl.
The Tex Mex station has many of ingredients that are used in the Chipotle dish. It is possible to heat up the chicken, rice, beans and cheese in a pan at the Omelette or Wok Station. These “bowls” are tasty and reminiscent of the national chain; as the popular video says, “Chipotle is my life.”
Craving Panera? On most days, the cafeteria provides bread bowls near the Soup Section. It is easy to prepare mac and cheese at the Pasta station, although the cheesy noodles are usually served for lunch on Tuesday. Butter, located to the left of the Deli section, and milk provide a richer flavor for the mac and cheese.
Oversized Bagel Bites are a relatively quick meal with the convenient pizza oven. Instead of using the half loaves provided at the station, grab a bagel from the bread cabinet, slice it in half, load it up with toppings and the cheesy goodness is at your finger- tips. Two halves of a bagel allow for greater variety.
When the cafeteria has fish on the entire menu, grab a couple of tortillas to make fish tacos, especially if there is guacamole in Tex Mex that day.
Depending on the day, there are also different options available at the Vegan Section that could perfectly suit a soft-shell taco.
The Omelette station sometimes provides bacon bits. These can spice up a salad or help create loaded French fries, along with melted cheese, sour cream and possibly chili.
There is also hot sauce located in all cooking stations as well as the rotisserie station. Grab a half bowl of blue cheese, mix some hot sauce and heat with chicken in a pan to get buffalo chicken, ideal for a wrap or on a sub roll.
Another easy dessert option, a favorite of Rudd’s, is homemade Rice Krispies Treats.
Her recipe: “get the cereal and marshmallows, melt butter and marshmallows in a stir fry pan and stir in the cereal as needed.”
Only one word is needed to describe this treat according to her: amazing.
Another dessert that everyone loves but not everyone might think to make is a chocolate chip cookie sundae. Grab your favorite flavor of ice cream, put a chocolate chip cookie or two through the pizza oven, sprinkle that over the ice cream and you have a delicious treat.
In the vegan section, three bean chili is served quite often. It could be helpful to remember there is almost always sour cream in the Tex Mex Station.
Similarly, if you are cooking a green vegetable at the Wok Station or just want to zest up your meal, there are lemon wedges at the Tex Mex Station as well.
Emily Balan can be reached at email@example.com.